Headed to the land Down Under

In just more than a week, I have the unique opportunity to attend the ABACUS Conference in Adelaide, Australia. As the industry body representing Australian credit unions (and mutual building societies,) ABACUS holds a similar annual conference to the yearly CUES and CUNA events. Through my involvement with the World Council WYCUP Program, I was asked by a fellow scholarship winner to present on the empowerment US credit unions organizations provide their young employees.

While I can’t comment for an entire industry, I can certainly attest to that through my involvement in the Filene Research Institute’s 30 Under 30 Program and of course the CUES Next Top Credit Union Exec contest. I was interested to hear that while ABACUS has a formalized Emerging Leaders Program, it’s almost an unheard of concept to look within the talent of the young leaders of their industry to help guide the future of Australian Credit Unions.

Which is where the strength of the US movement lies. These contests, research groups and other networking forums are unique opportunities to hear from the future of the industry to guide… well… the future of the industry. I’m honored and excited to show the ABACUS Emerging Leaders what a great job our country and industry has done with tapping into the talent it already has.

What I hope I can bring back insight on is the success of a formal future leaders group – one area where the US industry stands to improve. In my idealistic world, I initially feel like the combination of the two – American Credit Unions’ foresight to look to its own and the Australian Credit Unions’ established Emerging Leaders group – is the perfect combination that can really influence an industry that is so focused on identifying its future success. The stage on which to generate the ideas and the buy-in to get them implemented, frankly, seems like what both countries can benefit from. And maybe little old me can help spark some interest and support on two sides of the globe?

If the technology Gods are on my side, a couple of my future blogs and videos should come via Oz (as the locals call it.) But immediately next up: an interview with Erin King, my new Vice President of Unbanking as I promised to get right back to project updates in and between my long journey ahead. I think 24 hours of travel each way will be just enough to generate the rest of the ideas I’ll need between now and the final presentations in November!

Regional Finalist – Northeast